HC Deb 10 June 1953 vol 516 cc200-2
15. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he is aware that the Cabinet of the German Government in Bonn have approved a Bill to give compensation to victims in Germany of Nazi persecution; that it is desirable that this Bill should extend its benefits so as to include non-German displaced persons left in Germany; that this matter is urgent as the Bill is now on its way to the German statute book; and if he will state what representations or other steps Her Majesty's Government are making to the German Government in Bonn to extend the scope of the Bill in this manner.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

I am aware of this draft law. The hon. and learned Member will understand, however, that responsibility for protecting the legal rights of displaced persons in Germany is discharged by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. He states in his Annual Report, received last week, that he has been in continuous consultation with the Federal German Government on all aspects of the draft law. No representations have been received by the Allied High Commission from the United Nations High Commissioner on the subject.

Mr. Hughes

Does not the Minister of State agree that the regard for human rights which rightly actuates the United Nations is outraged by discrimination against victims of Nazi oppression? Surely something should be done to see that the particular victims I have mentioned in a letter to the Minister are included in this Bill?

Mr. Lloyd

I quite agree that there should not be discrimination. I think the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is very well aware of this matter and is seeking to do his best in regard to it. I propose to ascertain if that is the case.

Mr. Noel-Baker

In view of the wide interest in this matter could the Minister of State make the High Commissioner's Report available in the Vote Office?

Mr. Lloyd

May I consider the right hon. Gentleman's suggestion?